Sunday, January 31, 2010

Just in Time for February

Just in time for February I have actually finished my sweater. 
Pattern:  February Lady Sweater by Pamela Wynne
Yarn:  Patons Silk Bamboo in Moss (it leans a little more toward yellow than the above picture)
Needles: Size US 8, 32" I think?
Button:  vintage, out of my grandmother's notions

This is my first garment for me!  I thought about giving it away instead of fixing it, but I spent a LOT of time on it.  And I wouldn't want anyone else to see the ends I wove "in" (ha) under the arms when it was two hours past my bedtime. 
There were many stops and starts.  Shall we review:
~I had problems getting the yarn-overs over the joints on my circular needles, so I finally decided to skip the lace portion and just knit stockinette instead.  (My Addis are so worth the money.  I will never buy cheap circulars again.) 
~I knitted the whole thing only to see it was entirely humongous on me.
~I ripped all the way back into the garter stitch portion.  Besides being all-around too big, I really wanted the transition to be at or above my bust line and it was an inch or two below. 
~I knit it back down to about hip length.
~Once I got all that done, I washed and blocked it....  Thanks to the weight of the bamboo, the sweater grew four inches!!  Easily four inches, maybe even more. 
~I had to (gulp) cut my knitting.  Okay, I didn't have to cut it but I knew it would be the fastest way to the end result.  Plus, I had to show this sweater who is boss. 
snip snip snip

Here's the first version (left), too big around.  The second time I ended at about the same place, right at my hip.  Then I blocked it (right).  I knew the bamboo was likely to grow but I never imagined it would grow so much!  . 

Finally this morning, I cut off the bottom several inches, picked up stitches and bound off.  I didn't want to redo the garter edge on the bottom so I tried this new bind-off I found last night in Toe Up!  It's called the yarn over bind off.  It worked pretty well. 

Note to self: next time, wash the swatch.  There's a great article I just saw on gauge swatching,  how and why, and about the importance of "dressing" your swatch.  I believe that was in Knit Simple?  (Don't quote me on that but I was just flipping through the newsstand knitting magazines so I know it's out there somewhere.)  Oh if only I had read that four months ago.  But I might as well learn it the hard way so I won't forget!   


audreypawdrey said...

It is gorgeous! I love the color you used-such a pretty green.

ranette said...

I think it's just beautiful Karen! I love the green too...Good job!

Thimbleanna said...

Boy...what a LOT of work! It's beautiful though! That's the hard part about sweaters -- you put so much work into them, so when something goes wrong, it's just ugly. I never feel too badly about having to rip back on socks, but sweaters are an entirely different story. Love LOVE that pretty green!

larissa said...

It looks great on you! so glad you stuck with it. You are so brave for cutting your knitting - i'd be too scared.

Anonymous said...

awesome color! Good job!

Nana said...

It's even prettier in person! It's so neat!

ranette said...

Oh Karen....I love, love, love the new banner! Did you have that up the other day? Just wanted you to know that I LOVE it!

brigette said...

i almost hyperventilated when you said you had to CUT your knitting! i'm just learning to knit. on my second pair of socks, and one hat down... so this sweater looks absolutely amazing to me! I love that you made something you can WEAR! it's darling. Great color. such a cute style and it looks fantastic on you!
great job!!!!!!